Cold in the D: The Ice Cream Detroit Eyes 2022 Expansion    

The Ice Cream Detroit Chief Operating Officer Ysahai Honor-Marie, far left, co-owner of the company and Aaron Hall, far right, CEO and co-founder of The Ice Cream Detroit have multiple alcohol-infused ice cream flavors.
Photo courtesy of The Ice Cream Detroit


Just call her #icecreambae.   

 That’s what The Ice Cream Detroit Chief Operating Officer Ysahai Honor-Marie, co-owner of the company (with Aaron Hall, CEO and co-founder) goes by when she’s serving up the delicious treats from her trolley and soon-to-be ice cream truck.    

Started from the ground up in 2016 after a friend passed the company along to Honor-Marie and Hall, the Black-owned Detroit company sells alcohol-infused ice cream (and non-alcohol) sorbet and “shotsicles” all summer long and beyond.  

The pop-up confectionery company, which opened in 2018, sells its hand-crafted ice cream in small batches with a big impact. Known for their dairy and non-dairy flavors and vegan options, @theicecreamdetroit is your #boozyicecream destination that is primarily seen at parties and on the streets of Detroit bringing color to the already lit atmosphere.  

Smiling and always being a vibe, Honor-Marie brings the energy every time with her laid-back attitude and cold treats that she’s using to build her empire one scoop at a time.  

What began as a hobby, “something fun to do,” is quickly becoming a recognized name with lofty and attainable goals that the business team is mapping out to execute come 2022.  

“Right now, we’re a pop-up confectionary,” she said. 

With a background in hospitality and customer service, Honor-Marie and her partner have big plans for the company, which include opening an ice cream bar inside of a shipping container next year along with expanding their ice cream to retail.  

“In the meantime, we are looking for kitchen space,” she said.  

Hall, who has a culinary background, said that he took over the company full-time at the beginning of last year and he is looking forward to planning the next phase of the company with its brick and mortar, and the new addition of the ice cream truck. 

The company (not new to the game) already has heavy-hitter clients nationwide, including Miami’s annual South Beach Wine & Food Festival typically held in the spring. 

 “Every year, even during COVID, we sent 1,000 cups of ice cream and sorbets infused with Patron to the South Beach Wine & Food Festival… that is our biggest contract,” Honor-Marie said.  

Honor-Marie also told the Michigan Chronicle that currently the company is collaborating with liquor vendors to join forces with their ice cream.  

“We just recently did the Detroit Cocktail Classic in Eastern Market,” she said of an October event that celebrated drinking establishments, spirits and brands “serving up craft cocktails.”  

She added that their alcohol-infused ice cream flavors are a hit including ones like Strawberry Faygo red pop sorbet infused with coconut rum and strawberry basil ice cream infused with Patron.  

The company initially opened in 1952 under a different owner and with a different logo; it now has a new flavor and flair that Honor-Marie is glad to be helping lead.  

Honor-Marie, whose first name is Swahili for “sunshine” is somewhat the embodiment of rays of happiness. It makes sense that she sells something that makes others smile. 

“Be careful what you name your children,” she said, laughing.   

The bubbly business owner can’t help but share in the overflow of excitement about her company, in turn getting others excited about this journey, too, which is evident by the growing social media following and heartfelt interaction on their multiple platforms.  

“I really pat myself on the back – I’m really good at customer service,” she said, adding that at events they sell their ice cream in a freezer box atop a tricycle, which they also offer for rental. They also have an ice cream stand and recently acquired a mini-ice cream truck, which they purchased on November 30.   

Honor-Marie, not new to the food truck business, also owns separately another food truck, and said that she is all about women empowerment in the restaurant industry, especially in the local food industry, which she said could be more inclusive to Black women chefs.  

Hall is looking forward to overall growth next year while reliving childhood memories and making memories for others along the way. 

“I’m excited about these ice cream trucks – been looking for these small, tiny ice cream trucks [like when I was a kid],” he said. “I’m looking forward to going to a lot of festivals and doing the Coachella’s and food and wine in South Beach and … getting into future stores, retails.”   

Hall (whose favorite flavor is avocado passion and oat milk) added that his New Year’s resolution is looking like a reality of elevating the already-expanding company.  

“Hopefully we’ll be pulling up to a lot of spaces,” he said.  

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